Health Minister Edwin Poots told MLAs that shared back office services for health and social care services would generate savings of almost £120m over 10 years, on 14 May 2012.
The minister outlined the roles to be taken on by four offices in Belfast, Ballymena, Omagh and Armagh.
These included payroll, payments and recruitment functions.
The minister acknowledged that there had been much concern about lower-paid workers at offices in Downpatrick and Londonderry, many of them women.
In light of this, temporary offices would be created in these locations for a period of two years in order to "considerably reduce the displacement difficulties for the affected staff".
Sinn Fein's Sue Ramsey, who chairs the health committee, said its members had received considerable correspondence on these changes.
She welcomed the the concession afforded to workers in Derry and Downpatrick .
Sean Rodgers of the SDLP said he was extremely disappointed by the statement, particularly regarding its effect on Downpatrick.